HARARE, February 16 (The Source) – Spirits and wines maker, African Distillers recorded a 10 percent increase in after tax profit to $1.8 million in the half year ended December 31, 2016 from $1.6 million last year largely due to improved sales and cost reduction.
Chairman Pearson Gowero said all product categories registered growth with ciders well ahead of other segments at 40 percent over the prior year. Spirits, in particular Viceroy brandy, showed strong recovery compared to previous periods.
“Increased market place acceptance of our wine brands spurred growth in this category, registered volume growth of 29 percent,” he said in a statement accompanying company results.
Revenue in the six months to December amounted to nearly $14 million, a 10 percent increase from $12. 7 million in 2015 driven by a volume increase of 25 percent to 4.8 million litres.
“This is a result of continued pressure to reduce prices to counter competition and increase affordability,” he said.
Gowero said the general decline in disposable income resulted in preference for lower priced products but revenue contribution from the Ready to Drink category continued to grow.
Operating income for the period increased 17 percent to $2.5 million, attributable to increased revenues and reduced operating costs which declined by $344,000.
Cash generated from trading operations amounted to $2,9 million with $539,000 re-invested in working capital.
Earnings per share improved by 10,1 percent to 1.52 cents and the company declared a dividend of 0,2 cents per share.
Looking ahead, Gowero said the company will focus on exploiting revenue growth opportunities as well as cost control measures to improve profitability despite a difficult economic outlook.